You’re a busy gal, so when you get out of the shower every morning the things occupying your mind most likely include the amount of coffee you need in your body THAT SECOND, and that you’re already running late. You’re probably not thinking about the well-being of your vagina, since you assume everything is doing okay down south. However, it might be time to start thinking about it more often, because if you don’t completely dry off your vagina before getting dressed, there could be consequences.
Jason James, M.D., medical director at Miami’s FemCare Ob-Gyn, told Glamour that it’s much easier to get a yeast infection if you put on your clothes when your vagina isn’t toweled off first. When you put underwear on when things are still damp down there, you’re locking in moisture, which encourages bacteria to grow rapidly — and not the good kind of bacteria.
Yeast tends to thrive in a moist environment,” he says. “Warmth, moisture, and friction can all lead to irritation and the potential changes in pH that increase favorability for yeast to overgrow and become a clinical infection.”
Yikes. Dr. James notes that summer is the time of year when doctors see more yeast infections amongst women, whether it’s from not drying off after a dip in the pool or an active day outside that results in a lot of sweat. He continues, “All women have yeast and bacteria present at all times in the vagina, but it is the imbalance of one over the other that results in infection.”
But chances are, you’re busy in the mornings, maybe even in a little bit of a rush. That’s okay. You don’t have to change up your entire routine to stand around for a while to wait for your vagina to dry off. (I know, it’s a funny thought.) Instead, blow dry your hair and put on your makeup in the nude. Or, if you’re wearing a skirt or dress, save putting on your panties for the very last thing you do; that way, you give your bottom half more time to air out. There’s also always the option of taking a clean towel and manually drying off if you’re really trying to get out the door. It doesn’t matter, as long as you get the job done.
Also, Dr. James says you should stick to cotton underwear, not the synthetic kinds. This keeps away excess moisture and lets your vagina breathe, just the way she likes it.